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Fabians

Greasy Pole: Oliver Letwin – Eccentric or Fake?

Greasy Pole

There is more to West Dorset than the Jurassic Coastline. It is also a parliamentary constituency where, in the 2005 general election, they registered the highest turn-out in the United Kingdom. Effectively it is the Lib Dems who are now the opposition there – and this in a constituency which includes the tragic village of Tolpuddle. The Tory-comfortable loyalty of this corner of rural England is now represented by Oliver Letwin, consistently one of the party's policy wonks, once Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer, Shadow Home Secretary, author of a doctoral thesis Ethics, Emotion and the Unity of the Self, but also the originator of some of the most spectacular blunders even among Honourable Members. He refuses to read newspapers because they tell him “nothing I need to know” – but what they tell us about him suggests there are other reasons for his calamitous record.

Liberals and Fabians

Socialism & the State

The Socialist propagandist is often confronted with the assertion that the establishment of a system of Socialism would involve the subjection of the individual to a hide-bound State, that would eventually result in the enslavement of the people. The Socialist, on the contrary, asserts that the working class are enslaved to-day, and that only the establishment of Socialism can effect their emancipation.

The individualist attacks Socialism from the standpoint that the proposed change simply means the continuation of the present wage-system of production, in which the whole of the wealth of society shall be owned by a number of persons incorporated into a State or bureaucracy, instead of being, as at present, owned by private individuals. He maintains that the right of the individual is supreme, and condemns any action on the part of a State or collection of individuals, that interferes with his desires.

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